Blasphemy: ‘Driver abandoned Deborah’s corpse, father on road side; zoomed off’

…as CAN, relatives throng Rijau for burial

The late Deborah Samuel Yakubu, a student of the Shehu Shagari College of Education in Sokoto, who was stoned to death and burnt by her fellow students for allegedly making a blasphemous statement on a WhatsApp group, has been buried in Tungan Magajiya in Rijau Local Government Area of Niger State.

However, controversies trailed the burial rites with relatives condemning the manner which the remains of the deceased was handled, as the public vehicle that carried her remains and her father from Sokoto State just dropped them by the roadside in Rijau and promptly returned to Sokoto.


A family source and Pastor of the First Evangelical Church Winning All (ECWA) Church, Tungan Magajiya, Pastor Emmanuel Mahaji, while speaking with New Telegraph via phone, confirmed that relatives and friends had thronged the village to bid the murdered student farewell.

Pastor Mahaji, while condemning the manner at which the deceased was treated before and after her death, said the father of the deceased was called on Friday to come and collect the ashes of Deborah for burial.


Mahaji, who spoke in Hausa, added that the father left on Friday and returned with her remains on Saturday morning.According to him: “We are not happy with the way the government handled the issue with kid gloves. The driver of the public vehicle even just dropped them and zoomed off just like that.

“Imagine, the ashes of Deborah were brought in a chartered bus. Not even a government vehicle or a representative. Immediately after the driver arrived, he dropped the body, asked the parents to also alight and he immediately returned to Sokoto.”
Speaking further, he said the late Deborah had been living with family members in Sokoto ever since she was in the primary school and that it is sad that the government is not doing anything regarding the issue at hand.
Faulting the nonchalant attitude exhibited by the Sokoto State Government, Pastor Mahaji said: “They only called and said that it is not right for the family to take the corpse just like that without informing them.
“They said that they shouldn’t bury the body as the body is for the government and not for the family. They asked them to put the body in the mortuary but the parents insisted that she must be buried.”
Efforts to get the parents to speak proved abortive but one of Deborah’s uncle, a brother to her father, said that he can not speak until arrangements have been finalised, adding that: “We will get back to you later, we are still planning the burial and holding meetings”.
Confirming the arrival of the corpse, Chairman of the Christian Association of Nigeria (CAN) Niger State Chapter, The Most Rev. Bulus Dauwa Yohanna condoled with the family and the body of Christ.



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